Thursday, May 2, 2013

Endangered Languages, Revisited

A while back, I posted some ramblings on the loss of language, after having become involved with a couple of Kickstarter projects: Tim Brookes's Endangered Alphabets, and Alissa Stern's effort to develop multimedia tools for teaching Balinese, an endangered language with an endangered script, to English speakers.

I'm happy to report that both projects were funded, and the Endangered Alphabets will be making an appearance in the Smithsonian in June.

The Balinese effort is also going strong, and Alissa has initiated a new campaign on Kickstarter designed to extend the software to include Balinese-Indonesian teaching materials.

As I bear witness daily to the loss of richness in English, and the loss of linguistic understanding in general among my students, I can't help but hope that somewhere, some languages will survive, with all their embedded culture and poetic possibility.

If you're looking for somewhere to invest a few bucks, this just might be the place; and certain levels are even tax-deductible. I just hope that someone won't have to do this for English at some point in the not-too-distant future.

1 comment:

desertsandbeyond said...

Speaking of forgotten languages, my husband remembers some of the Gaelic that his grandmother spoke. He doesn't remember much, however. My maternal grandmother remembers the German that HER grandparents spoke. Our son, who went to UC Davis, picked up both Korean and Russian there from his roommates!
~~Cheryl Ann~~
Glad you liked the chicken in the cellar story. I'll have to recall some more for you.